1. 17 Flavors? NO Way!

    CR_Wrapper_OnlySupplementing with a Protein bar once a day is an important part of my nutrition plan for eating healthy.

    I just discovered Quest bars at the IDEA World Fitness Convention and they are my new favorite! Apparently they have been around for awhile as Juan found them at HEB. With over 17 flavors to choose from, we have ordered some for our studio so you can give them a try.

    Here is all the reason they are my new favorite and MORE IMPORTANTLY, they ALL taste GOOD!


  2. “More Cardio, Less Lardio”

    more cardio less lardio

    I cracked up at convention when I heard this, and how true it is! I am so often asked, “How do I get started?” While I want to sell resistance training right away, it is not always the “best” way for a middle-ager or older person to get started.

    For 30 Days …

    I recently designed a 30 day cardio program for a 50+ year old client using only a heart rate monitor and his existing club membership. He was not happy (as I pulled him off weight training for a month) but agreed to 30 days because what he was currently doing stopped working for him toward his goal to lose body fat.

    Consider a Heart Rate Monitor

    I really prefer all my clients wear a heart rate monitor. Monitoring your heart rate (especially for the first 30 days) will help you to NOT “overdo /underdo” your program. A heart rate monitor will meet you right where your fitness is and keep you from getting injured if you pay attention to it.

    lisa upside downCommitment

    So, decide how you want to move; inside, outside or upside down, it doesn’t really matter. Just COMMIT! For 30 days, every day, do a little more than you did the day before until you are exercising between 65% – 85% of your max heart rate. Keep building on the day before until you can do 30, 45 or even 60 minutes a day by the end of this time!

    Lose 8 Pounds!

    This same client lost over 8 pounds in the first two weeks, had to adjust to some shin splints and a blister but DID NOT stop. He will tell you below that he feels better than ever and agrees that this was what was needed to get him on the right track.

    Testimonial from Larry: “I lost 8 pounds during my first two weeks of cardio and I increased my endurance so I could walk further in a shorter period of time.”

    Services that May Help You!

    I hope you noticed that I wasn’t trying to sell you anything in this blog. For some individuals, even 30 days seems daunting and they need the accountability. If you insist on hiring us to help you get YOUR “rocket-off-the-ground” then consider an assessment and the 30 day cardio coaching program that is easy to follow with your heart rate monitor. An initial conversation with our wellness coach, Marcia Keener, might also set you on your way to a more fit YOU!

  3. A Fitness Book to Read

    body confidence
    This author was a featured speaker in a seminar I attended at the 2014 IDEA World Fitness Convention and he was awesome! I downloaded my copy from Audible.com and wanted to share my enthusiasm with you.

    Say goodbye to feeling disappointed with your body—“Body Confidence” is the highly anticipated fitness book from world-renowned Venice Nutrition Program founder Mark Macdonald. Macdonald’s targeted series of diet and fitness strategies are proven to burn body fat, boost energy levels, increase muscle mass, and eliminate sugar cravings for a better looking, better feeling body today. Providing a step up to holistic body care for fans of Tosca Reno’s Eat-Clean Diet or Jorge Cruise’s Belly Fat Cure, and an excellent companion to Cynthia Sass’s Cinch!, the Venice Nutrition Program’s innovative fitness plan focuses on blood sugar stabilization and a complementary program of exercise, sleep, and stress management. A foreword by bestselling author Chelsea Handler will let you know why Body Confidence is your next step to a healthier, happier tomorrow.
    Purchase your book TODAY!

  4. Exercise Routine To Build A Better Body For Cycling

    Spending countless hours in the saddle is not really enough anymore to cycle in the top third of your pack or take a turn leading the pace lines on long distance rides. Fact is, what you do indoors is just as important as “time in the saddle” outdoors.

    To get in the best biking shape this spring, do these five exercises from top pro cyclists in the nation.

    First, consider working out your core for a better biking body


    Perform these favorite gym moves from world-class pro cyclists to jump start your season and get in kickass cycling shape.


    Cyclists say: “Sprinters generally have more muscles”— just put a sprinter next to a distance cyclist and you’ll immediately see the difference.

    Crunches: Forget modern-day abs machines. Try good old crunches right on the floor. Lie on your back and clasp your arms behind your head. Slowly curl your torso toward your knees; bringing your shoulders four to six inches off the ground (don’t sit up). Hold for a few seconds, pressing your lower back into the mat. Return to start. Do 200 to 300 crunches every other day.



    Cyclists Say: “Preparing your legs in the gym is so important—it makes the biggest difference on the bike” – When just focusing on legs, do leg curls to strengthen the back of our legs.

    Lying leg curls: Lie face down on an angled leg curl machine after you’ve adjusted it to your height and preferred weight resistance (Consider working at 60 to 70% of your maximum). Place your legs (a few inches below the calves) beneath the padded lever. Grab the side handles of the machine, and as you exhale, curl your legs up as far as possible without losing contact with the lever. Hold for one second, and then lower down as you inhale. Repeat for three sets of 20.




    Cyclists Say: “My weakest point is my back because of the position I’m in for hours on the bike” -

    Dead Lifts: Bend at your hips and knees and grab the bar (A standard barbell in the gym is 45-pounds) using an overhand grip. Slightly arch your lower back while keeping your arms straight. Without allowing your lower back to round, stand up very slowly with the bar. Hold for a second, then lower the bar, again slowly (using a controlled motion), to the floor. Do three sets of 20.





    Cyclists Say: “Strength training, especially after the off- season, helps rebuild muscle without bulking up too much” – Rather than move statically or linearly using gym machines, a dynamic workout with free weights is preferred.

    Reverse lunges: Grab a set of dumbbells that are about 10 to 15% of your body weight. Standing with your feet hip-width apart, step backward with your left leg into a reverse lunge (creates less stress on the knee than the standard forward lunge). Be sure to keep your back straight and shoulders level the whole time. Come back up and repeat. Perform three sets of 20 with each leg.



    Cyclists Say: “The agility ladder is a great combo of cardio and strength training” – Try this speed and coordination drill on your NEXT workout.

    Agility ladder moves: Using a resistance band wrapped around your ankles, shuffle from side-to-side through the ladder for 100 back-and-forth moves. Or, if you have access to a Jacobs Ladder (an angled, self-paced, ladder-like piece of equipment) at your gym, climb up and down (that’s one rep) for 100 reps.

    quads 1          quads 2

    - See more at: http://www.mensfitness.com/training/endurance/5-exercises-to-build-a-better-body-for-biking?page=5#sthash.u5yFezfp.dpuf

  5. A Training Program for Water Sports

    Surfing requires strong shoulders and arms for paddling out to the waves, and core strength and balance for riding them back to shore. Do these five exercises three times a week for a month before your trip. On alternate days, try to get in at least 20 minutes of swimming and 20 minutes of jogging/rope skipping for aerobic conditioning.

    YPB PIC 1Medicine-Ball Jackknife

    Holding a medicine ball with your hands, lie flat on your back with your legs straight and your arms extended past your head. Tighten your abs and slowly bring your legs and arms up at the same time until your body forms a V. Try to touch the ball to your feet without bending your legs. Hold for one count, and then slowly return to the starting position. Build to three sets of 15 repetitions.


    YPB PIC 2Stability Ball Pullover

    Sit on a Stability ball with your feet flat on the floor and a medicine ball in your hands. Slide forward on the ball and slowly lie down on it with thighs and torso parallel to the floor. Contract your abs to raise your torso as if you were throwing the ball. Hold for one count, and then return to the starting position. Build to three sets of 15 repetitions.

    Dumbbell Flat Rotation Push

    With a 25-pound dumbbell in each hand, lie flat on your back on a bench. Hold the weights next to your chest, with your palms facing your feet. Quickly press the weights up, extending your arms and rotating your hands to finish with your palms facing inward. Hold for one count, and then slowly return to the starting position. Build to three sets of 15 repetitions.

    Dumbbell Shoulder Rotation

    YPB PIC 5Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent, and a 5-pound dumbbell in each hand. Raise your arms out to your sides at shoulder level and begin moving your hands in slow, controlled circles. Do 20 circles, and then switch directions for 20 more. Next, drop your arms to your sides and slowly swing your right arm back and over as if you were paddling. Do 20 repetitions, and then repeat with your left arm.

    YPB PIC 6

    YPB PIC 7Medicine-Ball Coil Jump

    Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and hold a medicine ball in both hands. Extend your arms so the ball is straight overhead. Bend your knees slightly, then explode upward, bringing your knees up toward your chest as you jump. Try to land softly and spring back up as fast as you can. Build to three sets of 15 repetitions.

    For more information – http://www.menshealth.com/fitness/5-surfing-exercises




    Leg squat progression exercises

    YPB PIC 8Here’s a split squat into a single leg BOSU squat progression. Remember with all these leg exercises keep your ankle, knee and hip in alignment. Look for any differences between left/right sides of your body. Keep challenging yourself and have fun with it.

    These strength/balance exercises are great to add into your program. They are a Big Bang for your buck exercise perfect for taking your surfing to the next level.

    • Week 1 Split Stance Squats. Build to three sets of 15 repetitions each leg.
    • Week 2 Split Stance Squats with back leg on bench. Build to three sets of 15 repetitions each leg.
    • Week 3 Single Leg Squats on Box top or Ledge. Build to three sets of 15 repetitions each leg.
    • Week 4 Single Leg Squats on BOSU Ball. Build to three sets of 15 repetitions each leg.

    For more information - http://surffitness.tv/leg-squat-progession-exercises/

  6. Month of Cardio

    Cardiovascular-interval training is one excellent way to strengthen your ticker. Cardio intervals are short bursts of intense exercise that gets your heart pumping, lungs working and body moving.

    The five exercises listed below not only get your heart rate up, but they also strengthen muscles from head to toe.

    Bust through any fitness plateau and keep your heart ticking strong with this month-long challenge.

    How To Do The 30-Day Cardio Challenge

    At the end of your regular exercise routine, add at least one set of each of the following exercises. Aim for at least 30 seconds per exercise for week one and increase by at least 15 seconds each week. Time your intervals and record them on your tracker.Snapshot 1 (4-29-2014 1-24 PM)Snapshot 1 (4-28-2014 11-14 AM)

    • Burpees
    • Bicycle Crunches
    • Jump Squats
    • Ski Jumps
    • Mountain Climbers

    If you don’t have a regular routine or are short on time, do these moves as a quick circuit. Make sure to do an easy warm up for 5 to 10 minutes (walk, run, bike) and cool down for about five minutes with some easy stretching. These five exercises are body weight movements, so you have lots of control over the intensity of each move.

    Watch this quick video for exercise instructions and modifications.

    30-Day Cardio Challenge Instructions


    1. You can do these moves as many times as you like each week. You can do as many rounds as you would like, but you must commit to at least one round four days per week to do the challenge correctly.
    2. At the beginning of the month you’ll need to record your resting heart rate and again at the end of the month. A low resting heart rate is a sign of a healthy and strong heart. It’s best to take this measurement first thing in the morning while you’re still in bed.
    3. Using your tracker, record how long you perform each move. Remember, some days are better than others. Focus on the overall trend and celebrate every day you get stronger. Just try to increase the duration by at least 15 seconds per exercise each week.
    4. Try not to take more than half the duration of the interval as recovery in-between exercises (i.e. you did bicycle crunches for 30 seconds, rest for 15 seconds before moving to jump squats).
    5. Because a healthy ticker is also a happy heart, make sure you record at least one positive thought per day.

    Get Started

    1. Get social for more support and motivation. “Like” the 30-Day Challenge Series on Facebook or follow @ypbrainers on Twitter.
    2. Share this challenge with your friends, family and coworkers. It’s fun working out with a group of friends.


    Print this infographic and take it with you so you can do this challenge any where you go.

    Let us know how your 30-day cardio challenge is going. Comment below.


    For more info, please visit Active

  7. Postural Deficiencies and Corrective Exercises

    postureTo gain correct posture we must learn how and what effects our posture.

    Posture is the alignment and position your body adopts at any given moment based on what your brain is telling it to do. A good way to think of posture is that it is your ‘default’ position at any moment.

    If you are reading this it is likely that you have bad posture or are worried that you are getting poor posture.  Maybe you are aware that something you are doing on a regular basis may be causing your posture to change for the worse.

    Take action to correct your posture now, the longer you leave it, the harder it becomes to make those corrective changes.

    Posture does not just refer to a standing still position, we hold a posture in everything we do.

    If we bend forwards to pick something off the ground, the way I would do it is different to the way you would do it. This is because the blueprint patterns or maps that our brain has created over time tells our bodies how to best go about performing certain tasks. The reason it is different for each individual is that everyone has different amounts of strength, weaknesses, tension, pain, ability to balance, etc. – we are all made differently.

    LORDOTIC - An abnormal forward curvature of the spine in the lumbar region.

    (click image for instruction)
    DSC01857           DSC01858

    KYPHOTIC - Abnormal rearward curvature of the spine, resulting in protuberance of the upper back; hunchback.

    Best posture exercise for…slouching too much when sitting, or else hunchbacks, or else kyphosis.
    (click image for instruction)
    DSC01859           DSC01860

    SWAYBACK - An excessive downward curvature of the spinal column in the dorsal region.

    CORRECTIVE EXERCISE: Feet Secured Sit-Ups
    Sit-ups to strengthen lower abdominal and hip flexor muscle
    (click image for instruction)
    DSC01864           DSC01865

    FLATBACK -  Loss of either lordosis or kyphosis or both, making the spine straight.

    CORRECTIVE EXERCISE: Cat/Cow or Pelvic Tilts
    Cat/Cow focusing especially on the COW!
    (click image for instruction)
    DSC01866           DSC01867

    For more information regarding postural deficiencies and corrective exercises, Click Here.

  8. Choosing the Right Activity for You!

    It is important to find out what types of exercises are better for you and not what is better for most people. People may get caught up thinking that running is the best for everyone, but one of the main reasons why people do not exercise is because they just do not like to run and think that running is the only way to stay healthy. This is why finding out exactly what is the right activity for you is very important to your health.

    What is the best activity for you?13563674775_8dca8e3b7c_o

    Trying to decide the best activity for you is really all about knowing who you are. Find out if you like walking, running, resistance training, group fitness, or bike riding. Maybe trying out a few things can help you decide what type of activities you like the best. You can also ask yourself if you like being with groups, a friend, or simply just going out and doing it alone. Just keep in mind that the best activity in the world is one that you actually do regularly and enjoy doing it.

    How to design a program?

    Finding out what activity is right for you will be the easy part, the difficult part would be deciding the program that is right for you. By program, we mean deciding when and where to do the activity. Here are some questions that can help decide what program is best for you.


    • How many days per week can your schedule accommodate exercise?
    • How much time do you want to commit during each exercise session?
    • Which days are best to exercise?
    • Which days are best to rest?
    • Do you like to exercise in the morning, at lunch, after work or evening?
    • Do you like to exercise alone, with a friend, in a group or a combination?
    • Do you like to exercise indoors, outdoors or a combination?

    These questions will help you figure out the best program for you. Don’t listen to what other people are doing; just make your program personal and exercise with what you enjoy the most. Ultimately, the activity you choose along with your program will all lead to a better lifestyle and living healthier.

  9. Slow-Cooker Beef Short Ribs


    My boss Lisa, likes to cook this because it is great tasting, easy to cook, and healthy. She likes to cook it with pure grass fed longhorn beef which has no added hormones, steroids, implants, or antibiotics. It also has less fat and more protein in it. Over the holiday season, we gave our clients some pure grass fed longhorn ground beef as a gift. For more information, visit

    Wright Longhorn Beef
    Phone (830) 437-2068
    Email wrightlonghorns@longhorncattlesales.com

    3-4 lbs. Wright Longhorn Grassfed Beef Short Ribs



    ½ c. dry red wine
    ¼ c. soy sauce
    3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
    2 cloves garlic, pressed
    ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
    ¼ tsp. dried thyme

    1. Combine the marinade ingredients in a 1-gallon zippered-top plastic bag. Add the short ribs, submerging them in the marinade, seal, and let marinate in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours.
    2. Preheat the grill with all the burners on high for 10 minutes and the lid down.
    3. Once the grill is hot, turn off the center burner and turn the other burners to medium heat (approx. 275° to 300°). Position the short ribs over the center burner, close the lid, and cook for 1 ¼ to 1 ½ hours, turning the ribs every 10 to 15 minutes. Serve hot off the grill

    Servings: 4

  10. EFL Shrimp Scampi


    Shrimp Scampi is a favorite item on many seafood restaurant menus and certainly is for my husband Rick and me.  Using this recipe, we enjoy the dish frequently at home in a healthy yet flavorful way.  It is a quick, easy recipe which we can make together as we catch up on the day after work; or one we can make for guests.  Try the recipe and add the seasoning to your personal taste, if you like, such as extra garlic, fresh Basil, and/or Parsley.   We use whole wheat angel hair pasta, add a green salad and sit down for a healthy, delicious, aromatic treat.  So head to the grocery store; purchase the ingredients you might need; and Enjoy!!

    Preparation Time: 25 minutes

    Number of Servings: 2

    Shrimp Scampi IngredientsIngredients

    • 4 oz. Uncooked Whole Wheat Penne Pasta
    • 1 T Olive Oil
    • 3 Cloves Garlic, Minced
    • 1/2 lb Raw Shrimp, Peeled and Deveined
    • 3 T Butter Buds, Divided
    • 3 T White Wine (or Chicken Broth)
    • 1/4 t Ground Black Pepper
    • 1 Lemon, Halved
    • 3 T Reduced-Fat Parmesan Cheese, Grated
    • 2 T Fresh Parsley, Chopped


    1. Prepare penne pasta according to its package directions.
    2. While pasta is cooking, heat olive oil and garlic in a wok or large skillet over medium heat.
    3. Add shrimp to the skillet and cook, stirring frequently, until it’s almost pink (3/4 done), about 2 min.
    4. Add 1 T Butter Buds and white wine to shrimp; saute about 2 more minutes.
    5. Place cooked pasta in large mixing bowl and combine with remainder of the Butter Buds and black pepper; mix gently
    6. Add cooked shrimp to pasta and gently mix it all together.
    7. Divide into two portions and spoon onto plates. Top with a squeeze of lemon, Parmesan cheese and fresh parsley.

    Serve and enjoy!

    Nutritional Info

    Amount Per Serving

    • Calories: 292.9
    • Total Fat: 10.6 g
    • Cholesterol: 247.5 mg
    • Sodium: 642.1 mg
    • Total Carbs: 32.8 g
    • Dietary Fiber: 3.5 g
    • Protein: 21.6 g

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